Sport Industry Group

Sport Industry Group Appoints New Managing Director

By Community | September 23, 2021

Sport Industry Group has revealed a leadership change, as current Managing Director Alex Coulson steps down from his dual role to commit full time as Managing Director of National Student Esports (NSE), while former Spotify exec Dylan Pugh will now lead the Sport Industry Group team.

Coulson, who has led Sport Industry Group for the last seven years, will continue in an advisory role, but will focus his time on NSE, the official body for university esports and the largest grassroots gaming community in the UK.

In his place, Dylan Pugh joins the business having recently come onboard at parent company Benchmark to lead the newly formed Sports Podcast Awards, which are designed to unite the global sports podcast community.

Pugh formerly worked at Spotify, before leaving in 2020 to set up his own podcast publisher, Pomodo. Since early 2021, he has spearheaded the Sports Podcast Awards, which now becomes part of Sport Industry Group. Prior to working at Spotify, where he was Head of Podcast Monetisation, Pugh has held leadership roles in several media and tech organisations and is a former professional rugby player, having represented Wales at sevens.

The announcement comes following the successful return of the Sport Industry Awards 2021, which saw the industry’s biggest night of the year reunite the sector. More than 1,200 people descended upon Evolution London to celebrate the very best the industry has to offer after an enforced absence, delivering a night that was more emotional, inspiring, and invigorating than ever before.

Nick Keller, CEO of Benchmark said: “Both the Sport Industry Group business and brand have grown hugely under Alex’s leadership. His knowledge of and dedication to the sport industry is exemplary and so we’re very happy that he is staying connected to the business. I’m equally excited to see how he continues to develop NSE and use his expertise to support the UK’s largest grassroots gaming community.

Meanwhile, Dylan is well placed to build on a brilliant platform and use his significant experience in audio to bring the Sports Podcast Awards, the latest addition to the Sport Industry Group portfolio, to life.”

Pugh joins at the same time as two other new recruits to the Sport Industry Group team with Molly Reynolds, Project Executive and Brian Matovu, Content and Marketing Executive, expanding the roster (pictured above alongside Coulson and Pugh). The team behind the world’s largest commercial sports awards are also actively recruiting a Head of Content and Marketing.

Dylan Pugh, Managing Director, Sport Industry Group, said: “I’m extremely excited for this opportunity, particularly given the momentum we now have after finally welcoming the industry back together for the Sport Industry Awards 2021. The energy around the room – and the industry at large – was palpable and I can’t wait to build on that moving forward.

“Sport Industry Group has an incredible means of bringing people together, celebrating success, and driving us all forward as a collective, and I cannot wait to build on the success that Alex and the rest of the team have put in place. Particularly now, with the Sports Podcast Awards, and as audio becomes an even bigger part of our lives and the business. It’s a really exciting time.

“A huge thank you to Alex, the entire Sport Industry Group team, and to Benchmark for this opportunity.”

Under Coulson Sport Industry Group has expanded significantly and now boasts an impressive and diverse group of properties, all aimed at developing, inspiring, and nurturing the sport industry.

Existing properties continue to grow more impactful each year, with the Sport Industry Daily, Sport Industry Awards and Sport Industry NextGen now informing, honouring, and educating more than ever before, while new properties have brought the industry increased digital tools and experiences.

Among them are Sport Industry Spotlight, a series of online and bespoke events tailored to specific audiences and areas of expertise and Sport Industry Slack, which brought the industry together at a time of need. The recently launched Sport Industry Jobs, meanwhile, is now playing a crucial role as we all shift to a more balanced working lifestyle.

Alex Coulson, Managing Director, NSE & Advisor, Sport Industry Group, added: “I’m immensely proud and grateful of everything we’ve been able to achieve at Sport Industry Group, and I can’t wait to see what Dylan and the team do with the platform we already have.

“The business has changed significantly over the last seven years – above all we value our privileged position at the heart of the sport business community. Sport Industry Group is perfectly placed to support the industry and collectively continue to grow and strengthen.

“I’ve loved my time at Sport Industry Group, and the industry itself has been my home for a long time too. Fortunately, though, I won’t be going far and I look forward to supporting from the sidelines and bringing the best of the sport industry to the esports community – and vice versa.

“A big welcome to Dylan and a huge thanks to everyone I’ve worked with while at Sport Industry Group, it’s been a fantastic journey and one I’m glad is set to continue.”

Sport Industry Group